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2013 budget to exclude uncertain grants

By JT - Nov 22,2012 - Last updated at Nov 22,2012

AMMAN — The 2013 state budget will not feature any foreign grants that are not certain, Ministry of Finance’s General Budget Department Director General Ismail Zaghloul said on Thursday.

According to official figures, the Treasury has so far received grants worth only around JD94 million, while when the 2012 state budget was prepared, the value of Arab and foreign grants was estimated to exceed JD800 million.

Briefing Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour on the 2013 state budget draft law on Thursday, Zaghloul said the bill will also include the cash support allocated for citizens in compensation for removing fuel subsidies, while the government will continue to subsidise bread and fodder.

He noted that the law also includes a package of measures to reduce public expenditures, such as minimising appointments at public agencies, the Jordan News agency, Petra, reported.

During a meeting at the Ministry of Finance, Ensour instructed the concerned parties to finalise the 2013 general budget draft law and the independent public institutions budget draft law as a prelude to discussing them by the Cabinet and endorsing them by early next month.

The premier stressed the need to maintain transparency in drafting the state budget law, noting that “there must be clear explanations of all the numbers listed in the budget”.

Minister of Finance Suleiman Hafez said the budget draft law shows a high degree of realism and transparency by taking international and Arab economic and political developments into consideration.

The budget, Hafez added, was planned in line with guidelines of the national financial and economic reform programme, designed to rationalise public expenditures.

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